fbpx

Latest Posts

Home

Facebook

Twitter

Search
About

Children will pay the cost of sacrificing education for indoctrination

As we explain in our forthcoming report The State of Minnesota’s Economy: 2017, it’s educated workforce has long been one of Minnesota’s economic trump cards.

Human capital

The economist Gary Becker put forward the idea of human capital.

We can easily understand how a business increasing the quality of its capital through investment will become more efficient. Replacing shovels with earth movers, for example, will allow each worker to dig more ditches. But we can also think of the workforce in the same way we think of our capital stock. If we increase or improve the investment in an individual’s education or training, this can make them more productive, enabling them to earn higher wages. In this sense, such investment is similar to business investments in equipment. As economists Roberto Cardarelli and Lusine Lusinyan have found, investments in human capital are correlated with increases in productivity.

Minnesota does well on education 

Minnesota’s education system has served the state well in the past.

The table below shows comparisons of the state’s educational attainment with the national average. Minnesota compares favorably on a range of educational outcomes, though the mediocre performance on AP test scores should be noted.

In the past, this strong record in education has been a major factor in Minnesota’s better than average economic performance. If a focus on academic excellence and these standards can be maintained, education will continue to boost the state’s economic future.

What’s going on in Edina’s schools?

This is why, from an economic standpoint, Kathy Kersten’s story in Thinking Minnesota, out today, is so concerning.

In it, she demonstrates how Edina’s public schools have increasingly prioritized indoctrination over education. As a result, while activism is up, test scores are down.

Today, the Edina district’s test scores are dropping. In 2014, 86 percent of Edina High School (EHS) students met state reading standards; today it’s 79 percent. In 2014, 79 percent of high school students were doing grade-level work in math; today it’s only 66 percent. In other words, one in five Edina High School students now can’t read at grade level, and one-third can’t do grade-level math.

These test results dropped EHS’s ranking among Minnesota high schools from fifth to 29th in reading proficiency and from 10th to 40th in math proficiency, according to Minnesota Department of Education data. This reveals a more substantial decline than the high school rankings U.S. News & World Report publishes annually, which show EHS dropping from first place in 2014 to fourth place today.

In the district as a whole, about 30 percent of kids are not “on track for success” in reading, and the same goes for math.

Education does not exist simply to produce future employees. But if we sacrifice our children’s education on the altar of political correctness, they will pay an economic price down the line.

John Phelan is an economist at Center of the American Experiment. 

Comments

Subscribe

Categories

Upcoming Events

  • Morning in Minnesota Breakfast Series: Winona

    Location: Signatures Restaurant, 22852 County Road 17, Winona, MN 55987

    Please join Center of the American Experiment Friday, March 6 at Signatures for a FREE breakfast with economist John Phelan.

    Register Now
  • Lunch Forum with Amity Shlaes

    Location: Hyatt Regency Minneapolis 1300 Nicollet Mall Minneapolis, MN 55403

    Buy tickets for March 2nd HERE. About This Event: Enjoy our Early Bird Ticket Special through February 23rd! After this date, ticket price will increase to $30. Doors open at 11:30 AM, program and lunch begin at Noon. In Great Society, the New York Times bestselling author of The Forgotten Man and Coolidgeoffers a stunning revision of our last great period of idealism, the 1960s, with burning relevance for our contemporary challenges. Today, a battle rages in our country. Many Americans are attracted to socialism and economic redistribution while opponents of those ideas argue for purer capitalism. In the 1960s, Americans…

    Register Now
  • 2020 Annual Dinner Featuring Sarah Huckabee Sanders

    Location: Minneapolis Convention Center Ballroom 1301 2nd Ave S Minneapolis, MN 55403

    American President: The Unorthodox Approach to Politics that Changed the World. Sarah Huckabee Sanders served as White House Press Secretary for President Donald J. Trump from 2017 to 2019. A trusted confidant of the President, Sanders advised him on everything from press and communications strategy to personnel and policy. For two and a half years, Sanders was at the President’s side, battling with the media, working with lawmakers and CEOs, and staffing the President on every foreign trip, including dozens of meetings with foreign leaders. Sanders is only the third woman and the first mother to hold the job of…

    Register Now